Even with an increase in screenings and checkups, breast cancer symptoms can still go ignored. This is sometimes the case with younger women. As breast cancer is often referred to as an “older person’s disease”, young women can miss early signs. This can also be the case in men, who may not recognize the symptoms. Cancer does not, however, discriminate.
Experts from the American Cancer Society have compiled a list of symptoms often overlooked that are opportunities to diagnose cancer earlier.
- Weight loss of 10 pounds or more without trying or changes to diet and exercise
- Unexplained fever without infection
- Extreme tiredness that does not get better with rest
- Unexplained pain that does not improve
- Changes to skin, especially the skin around the breasts
- Bowel and bladder changes in regularity
- Long lasting sores that do not heal
- Unusual bleeding such as bloody discharge from the nipple
- A lump that can be felt in the breast area or under the armpit
- Red or thickened skin of the breast
- Indigestion or trouble swallowing
- A consistent cough that cannot be explained
Source: The American Cancer Society – Cancer Symptoms You Shouldn’t Ignore
These symptoms do not mean that you have cancer nor are they the only signs that mean you may have cancer. For all symptoms that you notice and that have been persistent, speak to your physician.